Communist Eschatology: A Christian Philosophical Analysis of the Post-Capitalistic Views of Marx, Engels and Lenin – Part 3

Coming now to a few historical details of the communist account of history, twelfthly, we must mention: that not economics (as is believed by Marxists) but religion lies at the basis of all Indian151 and all Greek thought;1~'~ that idealism antedated materialistic Charvak in India152 and lonian materialism in Greece;15~ that the "materialism" of the lonians was consciously "religious" or "theistic"154 and thus qualitatively different from the confessedly "a-theistic" materialism of Marxism;155 that the lonian "materialists" were traders, not "communists"-as were the admittedly idealistic Pythagoras and Plato!156-that Aristotle was a champion of private property,'57 and that his realism was pronouncedly "theistic" if not anti-atheistic158 and was by no means materialistic.159

Thirteenthly, the communist view of the history of Christianity calls for special attention. That the earliest stage of the religion of the Old Testament was essentially non-monotheistic,'60 is contrary to the internal evidence of the Old Testament itself;101 that Christianity derives partly from Judaism161~ is incorrect, for Judaism-in contradistinction to Old Testament Israelitie religion-is a post-Christian religion derived only partly from the Old Testament and very largely from the post-Christian Talmud;162 that Christianity derives in part from Greek thought162' or from a Philonic judaic-Hellenic synthesis,163 is Engels' own construction, and contrary to the internal evidence of the oldest Christian documents;'63 that Old Testament religion defended private property104 is conveniently forgotten;'65 that the Essenians (who in any case had no direct connection with either the Old Testament or the New Testament) were theists and ascetically foreswore marriage'60 is also overlooked;167 that Jesus Christ probably never existed168 is not only contrary to the documentary evidence of the then contemporary writings of Tacitus, Suetonius, and Pliny, and even of those of the Judaistic (Philo and) Josephus, but also of later antiChristian sources such as Lucian, Celsus, Porphyry, and even the Jewish Talmud;109 that the Bible teaches that there are seven Spirits of God170 instead of only one Holy Spirit is demonstrably untrue;171 that the New Testament does not teach the deity of Jesus Christ170 is also patently incorrect;172 that the New Testament knows nothing of the Triune Godl7:~ is equally false;174 that the early Christian Church (as recorded in Acts chapter two) practiced community of property was even doubted by Engels himself,174~ and is not taught by the New Testament;175 that this so-called "early Christian communism" sometimes even included "community of women" is diametrically opposed to the testimony of the earliest Christian documents;176 that some of the early Church Fathers were sympathetic to community of property as an ideal177 is to be attributed to the influence of heathen Greek neo-Platonic ideas on them,17~ and not to the influence of the Bible;170 that early Christianity had a "democratic revolutionary spirit" (thus Lenin),180 is palpably incorrect;1"' and that the doctrine of Augustine of Hippo was essentially dissimilar to that of the early Christian Church181 is equally false.1~

Fourteenthly, the communists need to be corrected as to their views on Calvinism. Although Calvinism is indeed the champion of responsible free enterprise under God,18' it is incorrect to saddle Calvinism with the invention of the worship of capital, as Engels does,1~3" for the roots of this latter practice can already be found in the pre-Calvinistic trading leagues of Venice and Genoa.lA3b Equally incorrect is Engels' statement that Calvin "democratized the Church,"1"4 for Calvin's system of Church government is presbyterian (government by select[edl elders), not congregational (government by "one man, one vote"). Engels' statement that Calvin believed that success in the commercial world is not of man "that runneth, but of the mercy of unknown superior economic powers,"1"5 is contrary to Calvin' 5 insistence that commercial (and all other kinds of success) are indeed the result of man's responsible efforts,1R6 by virtue of the mercy of the known superior divine power of the Triune God;1~7 and that the anti-Aristotelian Calvin was in any way the cause of or in any sense sympathetic to (Aristotelian!) deism is demonstrably untrue.188

Page 10 of 168« First...89101112...203040...Last »